Staying Flexible

Freelance workers control their schedules in a way that most employees can’t

Back Web Only Jul 14, 2017 By Cherise Henry

I’m a firm believer in celebrating what needs to be celebrated in work and life. For me, that means throwing out some confetti for our one-year anniversary of the Freelance Life column! We’ve talked about everything from what makes Sacramento the ideal city for freelancers to learning to balance the hustle, from how to pay estimated quarterly taxes to vacationing like a freelance boss. We’ve covered quite a bit of freelance ground.

But there is so much left to cover. Things like how to start freelancing and how to take it to the next level. Things like how to successfully confront a client who hasn’t paid on time and how to navigate a new industry or skillset. Tell me, what do you want to read? What freelance-related topics are of most interest to you? Share with us using the hashtag #FreelanceLife.

Let’s celebrate all of our Capital Region-based freelance colleagues who are doing this day in and day out. Freelancing is all about freedom and flexibility, but it’s also challenging — with dry spells and the typical ups and downs of being a small business owner.

We all do things a little differently that fits our own freelance lifestyle, which in of itself is unique to our business, to our industry, and to our personal and professional goals and ambitions.

I wanted to find out from some of my freelancer colleagues what makes their freelance life unique or how it fits into their lifestyle. I also asked a local coworking hotspot about its freelancers. Here’s what they had to say:

“I like being able to format my own schedule around my deadlines and use downtime to focus on personal projects like creating my own fabric collections and original illustrations. I work a pretty typical schedule most days in order to maintain prompt communication with clients, especially when we’re going back and forth with edits and feedback. But I love the freedom of taking my work to a coffee shop, or my backyard with my garden and succulent collection.”
— Heather Klinger, freelance creative consultant, graphic designer and illustrator, Sacramento

“My freelance life specially fits my lifestyle. I fully understand the demands of being a creative and managing events, projects or even creative processes. I decided to propel myself into consulting by helping out all of my creative friends with admin tasks and projects, and many said it changed their life and allowed them to create more.”
— Faith McKinnie, freelance creative projects manager, Sacramento

“There are a lot of benefits freelancers are getting from utilizing our coworking space, having a place to focus and get work done, and having a professional place to meet with clients can lend credibility to your business. Then there’s the benefit of the human interaction — there’s a lot of opportunity to network and make friends, and also find new jobs out of it. There have been a lot of members who have hired each other or collaborated on projects together. People are always bouncing ideas off each other. I think it’s important to be around people that understand and know what you’re going through and the issues you face as a freelancer.”
— Carly Reich, director of operations at Outlet Coworking, Sacramento

“There’s the freedom of setting my own schedule, being selective regarding the projects I take on, getting to work with a broad range of clients. Then again, each of those benefits is often paired with a downside: at times I get so busy that my schedule is “setting me” and I have to work 12-16+ hour days, other times work slows and you have to deal with the perils of inconsistent income, and every now and then you get a client who proves impossible to please. Being my own boss has let me do some pretty cool things though. I’ve played in bands for years, and recently one of the bands I’m in has had the opportunity to go on small tours around country. It even helped me find the time to train and run my first half marathon earlier this year. All in all, I can’t complain about being a freelancer (even if I do, every now and then).”  
— Ted Angel, freelance graphic and web designer, Sacramento

“I don’t think my freelance life is unique, but it is fulfilling. Freelancing allows me the freedom to earn additional income, tackle a variety of projects that I normally would not get to do, satisfy my creative needs, and stay productive throughout the day and night.”

— Vincent Pascual, graphic designer, Sacramento

So, freelance friends, I see you and I hear you. Let’s keep connecting, communicating and working together to embrace this freelance life. Whether you’re a part-time or full-time freelancer, brand new or veteran, or you’re silently watching from the background of your office desk dreaming of the day you can jump ship into the freelance life … let’s connect!

We’re stronger together than we are on our own. It’s the #FreelanceLife.

What freelance-related topics are of most interest to you? Share with us using the hashtag #FreelanceLife.

Follow Cherise’s journey every month as she navigates the freelance life.

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